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December
The Mauryas

Chandragupta to Ashoka: The Backstories, The Sagas, The Legacies

From c. 324 BCE to c. 185 BCE, the Mauryas controlled almost the entire Indian subcontinent with efficiency and administrative finesse. Beginning with the origins of Magadha in the sixth century BCE, this definitive book on the Mauryas captures the drama, the colourful betrayals and the intrigues of the Mauryan dynasty in Magadha, starting with its enigmatic founder, Chandragupta Maurya, and his even more enigmatic mentor, Chanakya/ Kautilya, who helped him to get the throne.
Chandragupta’s son and heir, Bindusara, is an extremely shadowy, elusive figure in the historical narrative of the Mauryas. Sandwiched between his well-known father and his even more well-known son, Ashoka, Bindusara has slipped through the cracks of known history. Yet the little bits of evidence that we glean about him from varied sources suggest a ruler of power and foresight. A man of eclectic and whimsical tastes, even, who ensured that his heir would inherit a vaster empire than he did.
Ashoka, Bindusara’s son, was not only the most powerful Mauryan ruler but also one of the best-known monarchs in Indian history. There are several wildly imaginative tales that document his transition from Ashoka the Fierce to Ashoka the Contrite, consequent on the battle of Kalinga in c. 261 BCE where, horrified at the bloodshed, he underwent a radical personal and spiritual transformation and documented this fact all over his empire through inscriptions on pillars and rocks that have endured till today—a brilliant, pioneering method of communication.
An incisive wit and humour makes Devika Rangachari’s The Mauryas sparkle even when it is disentangling grave accounts of significant battles or tedious details of city planning. Culling details from secular and religious literary traditions, Graeco-Roman accounts and archaeological evidence to elucidate this lesser-known period of our ancient past, The Mauryas concludes with an analysis of the enduring legacy of this remarkable dynasty and its strong resonances in our present. 

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Science and Philosophy in the Indian Buddhist Classics, Vol. 2

The Mind

Compiled by Dalai Lama / Contributions by John D. Dunne / Edited by Thupten Jinpa / Introduction by Dalai Lama / Translated by John D. Dunne and Dechen Rochard

The second volume in a prominent new series on Buddhism and science, directed by the Dalai Lama and previously covered by the BBC.

Science and Philosophy in the Indian Buddhist Classics compiles classical Buddhist explorations of the nature of our material world, the human mind, logic, and phenomenology and puts them into context for the modern reader. 

This ambitious four-volume series—a major resource for the history of ideas and especially the history of science and philosophy—has been conceived by and compiled under the visionary supervision of His Holiness the Dalai Lama himself. It is his view that the exploratory thinking of great Indian masters in the first millennium CE still has much that is of interest to us today, whether we are Buddhist or not. These volumes make those insights accessible.

This, the second volume in the series, focuses on the science of the mind. Readers are first introduced to Buddhist conceptions of mind and consciousness and then led through traditional presentations of mental phenomena to reveal a Buddhist vision of the inner world with fascinating implications for the contemporary disciplines of cognitive science, psychology, emotion research, and philosophy of mind. Major topics include:

-The distinction between sensory and conceptual processes and the pan-Indian notion of mental consciousness

-Mental factors—specific mental states such as attention, mindfulness, and compassion—and how they relate to one another

-The unique tantric theory of subtle levels of consciousness, their connection to the subtle energies, or “winds,” that flow through channels in the human body, and what happens to each when the body and mind dissolve at the time of death

-The seven types of mental states and how they impact the process of perception

-Styles of reasoning, which Buddhists understand as a valid avenue for acquiring sound knowledge

In the final section, the volume offers what might be called Buddhist contemplative science, a presentation of the classical Buddhist understanding of the psychology behind meditation and other forms of mental training.

To present these specific ideas and their rationale, the volume weaves together passages from the works of great Buddhist thinkers like Asanga, Vasubandhu, Nagarjuna, Dignaga, and Dharmakirti. His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s introduction outlines scientific and philosophical thinking in the history of the Buddhist tradition. To provide additional context for Western readers, each of the six major topics is introduced with an essay by John D. Dunne, distinguished professor of Buddhist philosophy and contemplative practice at the University of Wisconsin. These essays connect the traditional material to contemporary debates and Western parallels, and provide helpful suggestions for further reading.

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The Hijab

Islam, Women and the Politics of Clothing

Historically, in India, we have instances of both unveiling and veiling that have been initiated by Indian Muslim women. The early 20th century saw many Muslim women joining the national movement, giving up veiling, feeling this was the only way for them to change their own, and the country's, future. Almost a hundred years later, the hijab continues to be a bone of contention in India, though in very different ways. On one hand, the rape threats that hijabi/non-hijabi women frequently encounter in the cyber world reflect the extreme desperation of the aggravated Hindutva millennials who are made to believe that unveiling Muslim women is their right while a large segment of Indian Muslim women are increasingly convinced that wearing the hijab is their constitutional prerogative.
This collection of essays, primarily from India but also with a couple from Bangladesh and Iran, complicates the relationship between Muslim women and the hijab. Moving away from predictable interpretations that see the hijab merely as an instrument of Muslim women’s oppression, the essays here, from a variety of perspectives including historical, ethnographic, and political, demonstrate that not only have Muslim women covered/ or uncovered their heads for different reasons, but the head cloth itself has had different forms depending on the region or period of history.
The essays track the reasons why clothing, especially women’s attire, is very often a site of contestation and provide ways to hear and understand the ways in which Muslim girls or women make their own sartorial choices. They also offer ways of interpreting the stakes in banning the hijab in different parts of the world, and the implications of the ban on Muslim women, the wider community and the very idea of citizenship itself. 

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November
Durga

One king. A group of incorrigible women. Nine nights.
The demon-king, Mahisha, rules Jambudvipa with an iron fist. He wears the horns of a buffalo and has the will of a bull. With allies far and wide, his kingdom—usurped from the Aryas—is prosperous. All seems well. But Jambudvipa’s underbelly rots. Teeming with crime, sin, and greed, the city and its people are not what they seem. Most of all, Mahisha himself. With his iron fist comes immense cruelty, horrific violence…
He must be stopped.
A girl wronged never forgets. Especially one made to witness her parents’ murder. And revenge, cold and sweet, will be taken. But Durga’s fight is far greater. And she needs allies. Luckily for her, women across professions are willing to fight the fight—a princess’ companion, a maid, a mercenary, a pirate. Alongside her. For her. For themselves. And they have nine nights.
For men and women in this ruthless world, salvation lies in this plan. 
 

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October
The Truth Pill

The Myth of Drug Regulation in India

Since 2004, when the fraud at Ranbaxy, the largest Indian pharmaceutical company at the time first came to light, the Indian pharmaceutical industry and clinical research organizations have been rocked by a series of scandals after investigations by American and European drug regulators. While the West has responded to concerns about quality of “Made in India” medicine by blocking exports from many Indian pharmaceutical companies, the Indian government responded not with regulatory reform but conspiracy theories about “vested interests” working against India.
More worryingly, the Indian state has also turned a blind eye to a far more serious quality crisis in its domestic pharmaceutical market. At times, these quality issues manifest themselves in the deaths of Indian citizens as happened in early 2020 when 11 children died in Jammu because of adulterated cough syrup. On other occasions, a dodgy drug approval process has led to the Indian regulator approving sales of drugs that have never been approved by regulators in the developed markets. The result is not just poor health outcomes but outsize profits for pharmaceutical companies manufacturing medicines that have never been validated through scientifically rigorous clinical trials for therapeutic evidence.
These twin crises, in both the domestic and export markets, is because India has either outdated regulations or no regulations in some areas. Even the outdated regulations are enforced with kids gloves by drug inspectors and judicial magistrates who are ready to forgive even those whose drugs are found to contain barely any active ingredient or dangerously high levels of bacterial endotoxins. In a race for growth of the pharmaceutical industry, the Indian state has sacrificed scientific rigour and ignored the basic principles of public health. Given India’s position as the pharmacy of the developing world, the failure of the Indian state is a problem for not just India but most of the developing world.     
This timely, important and compelling book based on deep research, questions and analyzes the actions of the institutions that are responsible for the safety and efficacy of the Indian drug supply in the context of the historical evolution of the Drugs Act 1940 from pre-Independence India to the present day. The future of Indian public health lies in responding to the issues raised in this book.
 

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September
The Dismantling of India

In 35 Portraits

In October 1947, two months after Independence, TJS George arrived in Bombay. He was nineteen years old, with a degree in English Literature. He sent out job applications––to the Air Force and to the city's English-language newspapers. Only one organization cared to reply, The Free Press Journal. The editor was known to hire anyone who asked for a job, but most new hires were sacked in a fortnight. George was put on the news desk as a sub-editor and eventually became an assistant editor. In Patna, as editor of The Searchlight, he was arrested by the chief minister for sedition. He spent three weeks in Hazaribagh Central Jail. In Hong Kong, he worked for the Far Eastern Economic Review as regional editor; in New York he was a writer for the United Nations population division; and, back in Hong Kong, in 1975, he founded Asiaweek. Six years later, he returned to India and settled in Bangalore. He began a column for Indian Express that ran without a break for twenty-five years, until 2022. His seventy-five years of journalism, concurrent with India's development as an independent nation, make for a unique understanding of events and personalities. Acclaimed for his widely historical, pan-Asian vision, George brings this far-flung experience to a compulsively readable new book, The Dismantling of India. It is the story of India told in 35 concise biographies, beginning with Jamsetji Tata and ending with Narendra Modi.

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Policymaker's Journal

From New Delhi to Washington D.C.

The art of political speech is to say things that sound meaningful but are impossible to pin down. You hear such speech from master politicians in not just India but the United States, the United Kingdom, China (if we knew what they were saying) and just about everywhere ...

Irreverent and hilarious, wise and introspective, Kaushik Basu’s journal records the course of his career over seven years, first in India as the chief economic adviser to the Indian Government and after that as the chief economist at the World Bank in Washington. Encounters with expected and unexpected world leaders and influencers—Manmohan Singh, Narendra Modi, Barack Obama, Sheikh Hasina, Deepika Padukone and many, many others—pepper and liven this charming page-turner of a journal. 
The Indian years were a period of high inflation, growth challenges (as the global financial crisis arrived in India) and also a remarkable growth recovery story, with India moving past China’s GDP growth rate. There were corruption scandals causing widespread street protests, plenty of late-night decision-making which one knew would rock the stock market the next day and getting to know politicians who were outstanding as statesmen in the midst of all this, as well as many who were not.
The World Bank years ranged from interacting with officials in tiny, remote countries like Samoa, to gigantic nations with considerable heft, such as China. It entailed sitting down with leading researchers to compute and announce global numbers on extreme poverty and rankings on how easy it is to do business in different countries (fully aware that there would be calls from irate finance ministers as soon as these were published), and assisting quarrelling nations to communicate amicably and coordinate on policy.
Basu narrates these momentous periods in his diplomatic career with a rare lightheartedness which not only informs by giving the readers a ringside view of Indian bureaucracy, but also makes this book the most compelling and enjoyable book on policymaking to come out of India in years.

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August
Sisterhood Economy

Of, By, For Wo(men)

'Shaili touches upon the most relevant issues of our times which most often are closed door conversations in a highly readable, heroic and engaging way... bringing a powerful, authentic and honest lens to women and the economy.' MASABA GUPTA

'A powerful book with many anecdotes of everyday women encountering and defeating the patriarchy, Sisterhood Economy will fill you with optimism and hope.' FAYE D'SOUZA

‘Shaili Chopra has a chatty and engrossing style of writing... Mainstreaming of sisterhood is not just about the economy, it is also about the society India desires.’ BIBEK DEBROY
 
Sisterhood Economy by Shaili Chopra is important, apt and timely. It brings to you real-life stories of the barriers women face as contributors to the economy... we are the real wealth creators and yet very little recognition of the existing barriers are discussed or resolved.’ PRIYANKA CHATURVEDI
 
‘When women rise, they lift up society. Sisterhood Economy is a deeply reflective book that explores and narrates the power of equitable ground for women.’ FALGUNI NAYAR


The new Indian woman is dreaming big and seeking change. Wanting to break from the triptych of bechari, badass or bitch, women are talking of being stronger together. What can a ground-up sisterhood of determined women mean for a country like ours and just how can it unleash and harness the dormant economic potential of half the country’s population?
 
This book is a power-packed insight into the lives of the women of the world’s largest democracy who are struggling every single day to get their voice heard, presence felt, and make their economics matter. Shaili Chopra puts a fresh lens to what’s powering or stopping women to seize the opportunity ahead of them, by talking to more than five hundred different women (and men), across classes, castes, cities, ages, ambitions and desires. Can the mother-in-law trigger change in a country’s GDP? What are beauty parlour economics? Are women claiming independence and can intimacy drive better economic outcomes? Why are single women rocking it?
 
Sisterhood Economy makes a bold, empathetic, and collective call for women to believe in their transformative abilities and put themselves first. Wrapped in emotional anecdotes and stories, this book is deeply authentic and essential reading for anyone looking to understand women beyond statistics.
 
India could do a lot better if only it treated its women better. How difficult can that be? 
 

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Guru Dutt

An Unfinished Story

Guru Dutt’s filmography has some names which have long been considered as some of the best films to have ever been made in India. His masterpiece Pyaasa (1957) was featured in TIME magazine's All-Time 100 Movies list in 2005.
 
His films are still celebrated and revered by viewers, critics and students of cinema the world over, not only for their technical brilliance but also for the eternal romanticism and their profound take on the emptiness of life and the shallowness of material success. He was Indian cinema’s Don Juan and Nietzsche rolled into one.
 
But while much has been said and written on the film-maker and his art, little is known about his life behind the screens. This richly layered account takes a deep dive into the journey of a lonesome, troubled genius who was endlessly being pulled in contrary directions throughout his life.
 
A child prodigy, who actually began as a dancer learning from the great Uday Shankar, an unconventional film-maker who desired commercial success without ever compromising on artistic satisfaction, a self-made entrepreneur who hated numbers yet single-handedly ran a film studio juggling the roles of a producer, director, actor, financier — all this while struggling silently with a deeply troubled personal life, at the centre of which was his tumultuous marriage with Geeta Dutt. 
 
Guru had it all — love, family, money, fame and validation from his audience. His untimely death by suicide, that too after multiple failed attempts, had shocked the entire film industry. But what led to that fateful night when he tipped his hat and said his final goodbye?
 
Best-selling Bollywood biographer Yasser Usman explores the man and the myth Guru Dutt in this definitive biography of a nonconformist star, uncovering the extraordinary lives of the rich and the famous as well the incredible toll it takes on the emotional and mental health of a human being. With cameos from close friends and colleagues Dev Anand, Waheeda Rehman, Johnny Walker, S.D. Burman and most significantly Dutt’s sister, noted painter Lalitha Lajmi, a short but compassionate, ambitious and ultimately tragic life reveals itself in the pages of this book.  
 
This is a gripping, meticulously researched and moving portrait of an unfinished life — a tale of unrequited love, unresolved relationships and unmatched cinematic talent.
 

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July
Strange Encounters

Adventures of a Curious Life

Drawing its wisdom from Hindu, Judaic and Islamic philosophies, this is the multicultural, multifaceted saga of Parikshat Sahni's journey from being a film student in Soviet Russia to surrendering Stanislavski for Indian cinema. Strange Encounters is a prismatic collection of travel portraits, impressions and life lessons that Parikshat Sahni has accumulated in his itinerant life moving within the golden autumns of Moscow to the tune of Tchaikovsky, returning to Mumbai and his roots, entering Bollywood, and finding fame.

Sahni chronicles stories from a life whose pendulum swings wildly from the humorous to the utterly horrifying. He confronts his thanatophobia on film sets and his atheism on an ill-prepared trek to Amarnath; he gives us drinking lessons with screenwriter friends and a profound insight into the state of culture wars in present-day Kashmir; he recalls the thrill of young love in Russia and its attendant treacheries of the heart, as well as a study of Pakistan, a history of India as the land of many, and a look at the current political discourse through the eyes of a refugee.

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The Blind King's Wrath

The Blind King's Wrath brings the tumultuous Burnt Empire Trilogy to a thrilling end. Krushni, the prophesied Dark Queen, has risen in the East, determined to have her vengeance on Jarsun, her father in her past life and murderer of her mother and grandfather. She is joined in her quest by the five children of Shvate, Karni and Mayla, now grown to young adulthood, and a host of other champions all burning with righteous rage against the God Emperor.

As old foes emerge and new allies reveal themselves, the stage is set for the greatest clash of all. A great war. On one side are the valiant but hopelessly outnumbered forces of justice and righteous vengeance led by Krushni and the Shvate Five. Looming against them are the brutal, demonic forces of their enemies led by Jarsun and the tyrant king Dronas.

In a shocking turn, Emperor Adri despatches the vast armies of the Burnt Empire, countless tens of millions of brutally efficient killing hordes, against the brave champions. On this bloodsoaked field, the fate of the Burnt Empire will be decided once and for all.

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June
Maverick Commissioner

The Indian Premier League. Its mere mention forces cricket fans across the world to sit up and take notice. World cricket’s most valued property has only grown stronger with time. Conceived and implemented by Lalit Modi in 2008, the IPL has forever revolutionised the way cricket is marketed and run globally. Modi had built and orchestrated the tournament by his own rules and after the stupendous success of the IPL, the same rules were questioned by the administration. Modi was subsequently banned for life.

How and why did it happen? What went on behind the scenes? How did it all start to go wrong between Modi and the others? Are there secrets that will never come out? This book is all about everything you never got to know. Each fact corroborated by multiple sources who were in the thick of things, Maverick Commissioner is a riveting account of the IPL and the functioning of its founder, Lalit Kumar Modi. Did Modi have a long telephone conversation with a BCCI top brass the day he left India for good? What really was discussed? Is Lalit Modi the absent present for the IPL and Indian cricket?

Soon to be made into a film by Vibri Motion Pictures, Maverick Commissioner documents things exactly as they happened. No holds barred and no questions left out. It doesn’t judge Lalit Modi. All it does is narrate his story. Who is the real Lalit Modi? Let the readers decide.

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Bitter Orange Tree

Zuhur, an Omani student at a British university, is caught between the past and the present. As she attempts to form friendships and assimilate in Britain, she can’t help but ruminate on the relationships that have been central to her life. Most prominent is her strong emotional bond with Bint Amir, a woman she always thought of as her grandmother, who passed away just after Zuhur left the Arabian Peninsula. As the historical narrative of Bint Amir’s challenged circumstances unfurls in captivating fragments, so too does Zuhur’s isolated and unfulfilled present, one narrative segueing into another as time slips, and dreams mingle with memories.

The eagerly awaited new novel by the winner of the Man Booker International Prize, Bitter Orange Tree is a profound exploration of social status, wealth, desire, and female agency. It presents a mosaic portrait of one young woman’s attempt to understand the roots she has grown from, and to envisage an adulthood in which her own power and happiness might find the freedom necessary to bear fruit and flourish.

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Forgotten Kings

The Story of the Hindu Sahi Dynasty

‘This Hindu Sahiya dynasty is now extinct, and of the whole house there is no longer the slightest remnant in existence. We must say that, in all their grandeur, they never slackened in the ardent desire of doing that which is good and right, that they were men of noble sentiment and noble bearing.’

People and their acts of bravery are often lost to the annals of history. But what of mighty lineages? Generations of kings and the lands and people they fought for? What of kings who fought against their own people?

The Hindu Sahi kings, to whom honour and pride were more important than their own survival, fought a near 150 year rear-guard action as they continued to be pushed east from Kabul, their original homeland, changing their capitals and defending themselves from their own countrymen.

The last of their house had the misfortune of confronting the juggernaut that was Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni. Where obedience to the Sultan would have allowed their house to endure, their honour would have them confront him over and over.

But who were they?

This book tries to piece together their story from the limited sources that are available from an age where historical sources were few and, in the case of the Sahis, mostly from the point of view of their enemies.

This is the story of a dynasty that represented a resurgent Hindu faith in a land that was long dominated by Buddhism but also coincided with the arrival of the Muslims.

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May
Spirit Nights

‘Tiger has eaten the sun!’ screams Tola the seeress when darkness suddenly descends at midday, and the great spiritual struggle begins to restore the light.

An ancient prophecy is fulfilled when darkness envelops a number of villages for days on end. The only thing they know is that a terrible taboo has been violated in the spirit world. Only by crossing the borders between the natural world and the spirit world, and acting with wisdom and courage can they get the light back, but who will dare to do that? 

Accounts of sudden darkness descending on the land exist in at least two tribal histories of the Naga people, the Rengma and the Chang. The story of Spirit Nights is inspired by a story of darkness narrated by the Chang Naga tribe. Names and incidents are borrowed from the original tale, but it follows the path of fiction to achieve its telling.

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April
One Man, Many Lives

Bhagwan Singh and the Early South Asians in America

Two men, near-identical names, and their intertwined lives. On one side is Bhagwan Singh, an itinerant religious preacher, a rebel on the run, poet, writer, and even a self-help guru. On the other is Bhogwan Singh, turban-wrapper, occasional actor, and one of the first Indians in Hollywood. When one appears on historical records, the other goes off the radar. This is a story of their journeys, intersecting, meshed, and melded mysteriously with each other.

Anuradha Kumar plays armchair detective as she courses through books, newspapers, pamphlets and films to uncover the trajectories of these two lives and the times they inhabited. As much as it is about Bhagwan and Bhogwan Singh, this book tells the larger and more remarkable story of how the first South Asians adapted, adjusted and remade themselves to a life in the New World.

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March
Inquilab Zindabad

A Graphic Biography of Bhagat SIngh

Far from the gun-toting, swaggering young man represented in pop culture, Bhagat Singh was a fearless student leader who spent his time reading, writing, debating, strategising and executing plans while working alongside his comrades. Detailing the life of a national icon, Inquilab Zindabad maps Bhagat Singh’s journey toward revolutionising the Indian freedom struggle and the people and events that influenced this quest.

While Inquilab Zindabad sheds light on his family members, friends, comrades and secret benefactors, excerpts from Bhagat Singh’s revolutionary writings on religion, caste and freedom are also present throughout the book. Informing the reader of his astute observations on politics and revolutionary life, the lessons from his life and writings are more relevant today than ever before.

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February
The Middle Finger

Never afraid of taking risks, Saikat Majumdar has taken his place as one the most striking novelists writing today.

– SHASHI DESHPANDE 

In prose of spare elegance and understated precision, Saikat Majumdar explores an ethical conflict around mentorship, as well as a welter of questions around creative compromise, cultural privilege and entitlement, including the insidious pressures on poets to be ‘snarky and snappy’. Here is a storyteller whose language is writerly yet beautifully unmannered, supple enough to combine irony with gentleness, finely-modulated observation with axiomatic ease. 

  – ARUNDHATHI SUBRAMANIUM

 A novel of love and friendship, pleasure, pain and jealousy.

 – R. RAJ RAO

What are the ethical boundaries of friendship and intimacy between a student and a teacher? 

Megha, a young writing lecturer in New Jersey struggles to finish her thesis and find full-time employment even as she begins to find underground fame as a poet. Restless and disenchanted, she lets her professor and friends persuade her to take up a position at a new university in Delhi. Moving continents, resettling in the city she knew as a teenager, she discovers that the university is an island of wealth and privilege, and that her mandate is to teach and train some of the key members of India’s ruling class. But her life as a teacher is disrupted as she makes a new friend who unsettles her and asks for unexpected support. 

In sharp and lyrical prose, The Middle Finger tells the story of a poet grappling with questions about mentorship and belonging, disrupting boundaries set by society and the hierarchies hidden in the world of education.

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January
The Eastern Gate

War and Peace in Nagaland, Manipur and India's Far East

Traders, Pushers, Soldiers, Spies.

A pivot for India’s Act-East policy. The gateway to a future of immense possibilities from hydrocarbons to regional trade over land and water that could create a new Silk Route. A bulwark against China. A cradle of climate change dynamics and migration. ‘Northeast’ India, the appellation with which India’s far-east is known, is all this and more.

Alongside hope and aspiration, it is also home to immense ethnic and communal tension, and a decades-old Naga conflict and the high-profile peace process that involves four gateway states—Nagaland, Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh and Assam—and several million people. It’s among the most militarized zones in the world. It’s a playground of corruption and engineered violence. Only real peace, and calm in both Myanmar and Bangladesh, will unlock this Eastern gate.

A keen observer and frequent chronicler of the region, Sudeep Chakravarti has for several years offered exclusive insights into the Machiavellian—Chanakyan—world of the Naga and other conflicts and various attempts to resolve these. He now melds the skills of a journalist, analyst, historian and ethnographer to offer inside stories and a ringside view to the tortuous, no-holds-barred attempts at resolving conflict.

Employing a ‘dispatches’ style of storytelling, and interviews with rebel leaders, politicians, bureaucrats, policymakers, security specialists and operatives, gunrunners, ‘narcos’, peace negotiators and community leaders, Chakravarti’s narrative provides a definitive guide to the transition from war to peace, even as he keeps a firm gaze on the future. The Eastern Gate is a tour de force that captures this story of our times.

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Life, Interrupted

Understanding India's Suicide Crisis

"A timely book that can help us have potentially life-saving conversations" - DEEPIKA PADUKONE, Actor & Founder, LiveLoveLaugh

In India we tend to have a fatalistic attitude towards suicide, tending to believe that nothing can be done to prevent it, focusing only on the politically volatile issue of farmer suicides, or periodically, when there is a death by suicide of a prominent personality or suicides in vulnerable groups (for example, students especially after Board exam results), there is a hue and cry in the popular press with opinion makers demanding immediate action.

Why should you care? Because a disproportionate number of young Indians die by suicide and these are preventable deaths.

The resulting knee-jerk reaction from policymakers is to offer some immediate solutions (appointing counsellors in colleges, etc.) which have little evidence of success. After a while, everyone forgets the issue, until the next such event and the cycle repeats itself.

This book aims to present evidence-based strategies to tackle suicide, using interviews, case studies and conversations that lay readers can make sense of, while proposing an outline of steps that policymakers, journalists and key stakeholder groups can collaborate on to provide better solutions and save precious lives in India.

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